During periods of constriction and insecurity, we can become so fearful of difference and so in need of preserving our fragile hold on things that we can fall under the spell of our own glare and retreat into a form of personal fundamentalism. This poem speaks to our need to break free.
An Open Hand
The mind is not a storeroom
with mirrors where we retreat
to convince ourselves
that we exist.
The mind is a livingroom with
windows and more than one chair,
so friends can come and look out
and discuss what they see.
Not a fortress where we frisk and
strip others of what they believe
in order to share our secrets.
More a porch with birdfeeders
and coffee or tea where before
hello, you have to share a story.
Pull the curtains! Open the
windows! Brew the coffee!
Put out a sign: Other Views
A Question to Walk With: In conversation with a friend or loved one, share a position that you are clinging to right now and seek other views, avoiding argument or debate. Simply water the ground of the situation with the water of each other’s care and see what happens.